Treating Trauma and Shame in Clinical Practice

Presented by Patti Ashley, Ph.D., LPC

Live Streaming on July 7 - 8, 2022


12 Hours  |   Pre-approved for CEU’s


This online course will be streaming live on July 7 – 8, 2022 from 8:30am – 4:00pm PT, 10:30am – 6:00pm CT, 11:30am – 7:00pm ET after purchase.

10:00am – 10:15am PT, 12:00pm – 12:15pm CT, 1:00pm – 1:15pm ET
12:00pm – 1:00pm PT, 2:00pm – 3:00pm CT, 3:00pm- 4:00pm ET
2:30pm – 2:45pm PT, 4:30pm – 4:45pm CT, 5:30pm – 5:45pm ET

Recorded footage and all course content (certificate, videos, quiz) will be available until August 12, 2022. Extensions cannot be granted under any circumstances. 

Registration will close on July 6, 2022. 


IN PERSON: This event is also being offered as an in person workshop. For more information and registration, please CLICK HERE

LIVE STREAM: Please see below information for details and registration.

Shame and trauma are often linked. Current research on how trauma impacts individuals has changed the course of treatment for many clinicians. Furthermore, when implicit core shame is not identified, progress with clients may be slower and less effective. Shame can push clients to hide their innermost feelings because the self-reflection needed to help them improve can activate dysregulated emotional states and a lack of emotional safety. Shame often goes undetected in a therapy session because it is like an infectious disease that lies untreated due to symptoms that may be difficult to recognize.

This workshop helps clinicians recognize the non-verbal, unspoken, and often unseen aspects of core shame in clinical work. Identifying the neurophysiological development of shame and trauma throughout the lifespan can drastically improve treatment outcomes. Evidence-based tools and techniques that break the spell of core shame and trauma related to anxiety, depression, and other mental health diagnoses help clients reconstruct a more authentic self.

Treating core shame requires the clinician to be vulnerable, courageous, and able to tolerate right-brain dysregulation as it occurs within the therapy session. Creating authentic relationships with clients and trusting the individualized process allows clinicians to step more fully into unconditional positive regard. This allows the client to feel “good-enough,” as the therapist sees and feels into the client’s experience with large empathy, the antidote to shame. Clinicians who have taken this workshop report feeling “a sigh of relief,” as they can better acknowledge that they are, in-fact, a “good-enough” therapist.

  • The definition and origins of implicit core shame.
  • The neurophysiological effects of trauma and shame.
  • How shame goes undetected by clinicians.
  • How shame itself can be shaming.
  • Using Erikson, Piaget, and other developmental models to pinpoint where core shame originated.
  • The significance of the first seven years of development.
  • The evolution of social-emotional development.
  • How trauma and shame similarly impact the autonomic nervous system’s sense of safety and connection.
  • The non-verbal, sensory, and implicit development of shame.
  • Core shame as an identity.
  • The construct of self-loathing and chronic feelings of inadequacy as core shame.
  • Shame starts with attachment.
  • Ruptures in interpersonal relationships contribute to a shame-based identity.
  • Prolonged subconscious shame effects from shame-based parenting practices.
  • How all degrees of trauma and shame impact the sensory body memory.
  • Attachment theory and how it relates to the internalization of trauma and shame, and subsequent adult attachment styles.
  • Early right brain development, particularly 0-3 years.
  • Development of a False Self vs. True Self.
  • How executive functioning is affected by trauma and shame.
  • How early relationships set the stage for adult relationships.
  • Core shame as the hub of a wheel. • Defensive reactions that develop in attempts to find safety.
  • Perfectionism, rage, blame and other defences against shame.
  • The impact of core shame on all relationships, including therapeutic outcomes.
  • Trauma and shame-based beliefs or “stories” that remain unchanged until the unconscious experience in the body changes.
  • The hierarchy of polyvagal theory.
  • Neuroception and the nonverbal, implicit, and sensory aspects of shame.
  • How developmental trauma and shame can contribute to depression, anxiety, disordered eating, mood disorders, and relationship conflicts.
  • Shame, addiction, and relapse.
  • The difference between guilt and shame. • How Subtle Abuses of Power (SAP) can keep clients “stuck.”
  • Multicultural perspectives. • Why self-compassion is so hard to access.
  • The effects of unexpressed grief on shame and trauma

Tolerating Shame in Clinical Practice

  • Increasing tolerance of shame states.
  • Witnessing and tolerating the emergence of affect.
  • Large empathy and being vulnerable.
  • Amplifying positive affect for connection.
  • Therapeutic empathy as a right-brain activity.
  • Managing enactment moments of shame.
  • Engaging and sustaining self-compassion.
  • Repairs and restorations in the interpersonal bridge to self and others.
  • Courage and vulnerability.
  • Self-care for therapists.
  • Identify the neurophysiological effects of trauma and implicit core shame, and how they impact the autonomic nervous system’s sense of safety and connection.
  • Define core shame and identify the non-verbal, sensory, and implicit cues.
  • Explore how attachment theory relates to the internalization of trauma and shame, and subsequent adult attachment styles.
  • Recognize how early relationships set the stage for adult relationships.
  • Identify how core shame defences develop attempting to find emotional safety.
  • Recognize how shame-based beliefs remain unchanged until the unconscious experience in the body changes.
  • Acknowledge how core shame impacts all aspects of relationships, including therapeutic outcomes.
  • Activate co-regulation to create safety in the therapeutic relationship.
  • Increase self-awareness of shame to better overcome barriers of relational presence.
  • Develop acute right-brain relational attainment with clients.
  • Define top-down and bottom-up processing and how they work together in trauma and shame treatment.
  • Identify the four “R”s of Stephen Porges’ polyvagal theory.
  • Learn somatic and relational tools to foster compassion & empathy.
  • Practice evidence-based tools and techniques to break the spell of core shame and trauma.
  • Utilize mindfulness to calm nervous system responses.
  • Excavate old narratives and rescript more authentic responses.
  • Develop ways to balance power and relational presence in treatment.

Clinical Professionals: All mental health professionals including, but not limited to Clinical Counsellors, Psychologists, Psychotherapists, Social Workers, Nurses, Occupational Therapists, Hospice and Palliative Care Workers, School Counsellors, Youth Workers, Mental Health Workers, Addiction Specialists, Marital & Family Therapists, Speech Language Pathologists, Vocational Rehabilitation Consultants and all professionals looking to enhance their therapeutic skills.

International workshop presenter, author, and psychotherapist Patti Ashley, Ph.D, LPC, has integrated 40 years of experience in special education, child development, and psychology into her wholehearted work as a psychotherapist, author, international speaker, and authenticity architect coach. She brings unique insights into the identification and treatment of shame, trauma, grief, and dysfunctional family patterns.

Dr. Ashley owns and operates Authenticity Architects in Boulder, Colorado. Her inimitable Authenticity Architects model facilitates long-term changes in the brain and nervous system, helping clients break through unconscious barriers and rediscover a sense of self-love, belonging, and connection.

Patti has counselled a myriad of individuals, couples, families and groups in mental health agencies, psychiatric hospitals, and private practice settings. She also has many years of experience developing continuing education courses for physicians, hospital wellness programs, universities, and other organizations.

Dr. Ashley holds a Doctor of Philosophy Degree in psychology from the Union Institute and University, a Master of Education Degree in early childhood from Old Dominion University, and a Bachelor of Science Degree in special education from James Madison University. She is the author of Living in the Shadow of the Too-Good Mother Archetype (2014), Letters to Freedom (2019), and Shame-Informed Therapy: Treatment Strategies to Overcome Core Shame and Reconstruct the Authentic Self (2020). 

For more information, please visit

RegistrationEarly bird FeeRegular Fee
Individual Enrollment$449.00N/A
Full-Time Student$359.00N/A

All fees are in Canadian dollars ($CAD).

For group and/or student rates please view our Terms & Conditions and contact for more information and registration. 

  • Canadian Psychological Association
    The Alberta College of Social Workers (ACSW) and the Newfoundland and Labrador Association of Social Workers (NLASW) accept CPA-approved continuing education credits